5 More Chardonnays and a Great Value

Before I give my reviews of 5 chardonnays I recently tasted, I need to alert you to a real steal of a red wine I stumbled across. Purchased at PricsSmart, I don’t know if it’s their exclusive or is available elsewhere. Senorio D Barriobero, Joven, Rioja, Spain.  12.5% alc.  $4.65! I can’t find a vintage anywhere on the label.  This wine blew us away!  Sometimes we take a flyer on something with a great price and occasionally (rarely) find a real gem.  This is one of those gems!  Rich, balanced and complex.  A heavyweight at a lightweight price.  If anyone is going to PriceSmart soon, please get me a case! BEST BUY & HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Now, on to the chardonnays.


2011 Santa Julia Chardonnay Reserva, $10.00, 13.5% alc. Argentina
Notes of earth, oak and citrus.  Rather simple but a decent cold quaffer.

2012 Marquis de Casa Concha Chardonnay, $15.00, 14.6% alc. Chile
Produced by the huge Concha Y Toro winery.  Rather rich by comparison with the other chardonnays I’ve tasted recently.  A light toast flavor with some oak, lemon and flavors.  Not overly complex but a nice drink.

2012 Amelia Limited Release Las Petras Vineyard, $28.95, 14% alc. Chile
Also by Concha Y Toro.  For fans of the old style of California chardonnays.  Rich, heavy, buttery with a lot of toast and oak.  Oily and smelling of popcorn and burnt sugar.  Butterscotch, lemon and tropical fruit flavors.  I wish they didn’t put it in such a big, thick and environmentally wasteful bottle.  The world is going in a different direction.  No one is impressed with exceptionally heavy glass these days.

2012 Louis Jadot Pouilly Fuisse, $29.30, 13% alc. France
Many years ago, Pouilly Fuisse was very popular, with the yuppies of the ‘80’s, it was their wine of choice for a while.  As with many trends, what goes up must come down.  But it has always been a pretty good and reasonably priced French chardonnay.  This is a good example. Lemon, light oak, a bit of earth. Rarely great but usually reliable.   It gets much better as it warms a bit.  Don’t drink ice cold.

2012 Calvet Pouilly Fuisse Grande Reserve, $30.25, 13% alc. France.
Another good Pouilly Fuisse. Clean, crisp, a bit simple but very appealing.  This too is better if it isn’t ice cold.

M. Stefan has over 20 years experience in the wine trade and has traveled extensively throughout the wine producing regions of the world.  His column is a regular feature of La Playa Community.  He can be reached at mark@playacommunity.com and appreciates your comments.